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Mariners 7, Tigers 0: A lousy way to end a series

Rodriguez didn’t have it today, but Rodríguez sure did.

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Detroit Tigers Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Tigers took on the Mariners on a delightful, sunny Detroit afternoon to try to salvage the finale of a three-game set. They did not do so, and lost meekly to the Washingtonians 7-0, getting only four hits in the process. Let’s just say the Tigers looked as powerless as DTE has left much of the metropolitan Detroit area this week.

Eduardo Rodriguez, who’d been generally pretty solid since coming back from his absence, took the hill for the Tigers. Rodriguez was really hitting his stride in mid-May when he initially got injured, and after returning from his leave from the team, he turned in a pair of excellent starts against the Angels and Rangers. After all the turmoil the starting rotation has seen, it’s really nice to see some pieces starting to fit back into the puzzle — assuming they don’t stink up the joint, which they do from time to time.

The white-hot Mariners sent Logan Gilbert to the mound. This is Gilbert’s second full season in the majors, and he’s been a nice addition to Seattle’s pitching staff in that time: his strikeout numbers won’t dazzle you, but he limits home runs, doesn’t walk an outrageous number of guys, and will consistently give you about six innings per start (and occasionally seven). He’ll hit the high-90s with his hard stuff, and has a high-80s slider with outstanding movement... which suggests, of course, a pile of strikeouts were in the offing against this Tigers lineup, doesn’t it?

Rodriguez got into trouble right away in the first, walking rookie sensation Julio Rodríguez, and a sure-fire double-play grounder clanked off Jeimer Candelario’s glove at third to put the first two on. After a strikeout, old friend Eugenio Suarez threaded a grounder through the shift to score Rodríguez, putting Seattle up 1-0, and Rodriguez’s first inning took thirty pitches.

Rodríguez took Rodriguez deep on the first pitch of the third, a no-doubter leadoff home run two-thirds of the way up the left-field stands. Ty France thought that was a pretty good idea, so three pitches later he hit his own out to left, making the score 3-0.

The Mariners weren’t nearly done scoring, though: Curt Casali crushed a sinker to the right-centrefield gap, scoring a pair. He stopped at second with a double, but he probably could’ve moonwalked to third standing up. A two-out bloop single by France scored Casali, and a foul pop-out to first ended Rodriguez’s day: four innings, six runs (five earned), two walks, five whiffs. Woof. Garrett Hill took over for Rodriguez in the fifth, and he ended up pitching three really nice innings of one-hit ball.

Meanwhile, Gilbert was breezing his way through the Tigers’ lineup, striking out seven through five, needing only 70 pitches to do so, and only surrendering a pair of weak singles in the process. He was straight-up dealin’ at this point: he struck out two more in the sixth, including Javier Báez on an outside slider that bounced, and that ended his day, matching his career high with nine whiffs.

Old friend Matthew Boyd pitched the eighth inning for the Mariners, and his first pitch was a beauty of a curveball for a strike. That was the first major-league pitch Boyd threw for a team other than the Tigers since 2015. He threw an impressive 1-2-3 inning, and I can’t help but put this here:

Starring Matt Boyd

José Cisnero pitched the ninth, loaded the bases with two out, and walked in a run. A running catch by Akil Baddoo in the left-centerfield gap got the Tigers out of the inning without any further damage. But, that capped the scoring for the day, and the Tigers were shut out yet again.

“Boy, is he strict!

With apologies to the Waco Kid, of course; pitch #4 was a called ball to Akil Baddoo. Tight strike zone all day from Andy Fletcher.

Notes and Stats

  • Between his three-hit effort in the second game of the August 15 doubleheader against the Guardians and yesterday’s game (inclusive), Victor Reyes’ slash line was .327/.379/.442 for a .822 OPS in 58 plate appearances. This includes four doubles and a triple.
  • Speaking of that doubleheader, before today’s game, the first game of that August 15 twinbill featured Javier Báez’s last extra-base hit, off Aaron Civale.
  • Seattle right-fielder Taylor Trammell’s name is pronounced truh-MEL. I know, it’s pretty tempting to say it the way you’re used to saying it.
  • On this date in 1897, the first subway in North America opened. Think it was in New York? Think again, smarty-pants, it was in Boston. If you’re familiar with the city, it’s the Tremont Street section of the modern-day Green Line; part of the original tunnel is still being used today.